It is one of those things that require, above all, psychological stability.
At first, glance, opening a small hotel or a food outlet is a relatively simple business idea. You just bought a room or rented a place, renovated it, hired staff or two to maintain order – and that is all, collect the money, pay taxes, and pocket the rest.
Services like Airbnb and other accommodation-sharing websites have even brought down the entry barriers for opening a hospitality business.
However, like any other business, the hotel business has many pitfalls. And it’s important to think about them ahead of time – before you find yourself with an insurmountable loan and a distinct realization: “I don’t think this is my thing.”
Here’s what you need to know before you set out to register your mini-hotel.
You’ll need a consultant
In principle, you can act as one yourself – if you have an economics degree or you’ve studied hotel business. Or have an experience as a hotel manager. This background ensures that you have at least a general idea of how this mechanism works.
And there are a lot of nuances: from the choice of the legal form of business and taxation system in which you will build a business to details – where to buy supplies, how to schedule cleaning and staff work, who to contact if necessary for emergency repairs, and so on.
Once again, if you are a beginner, you will need a professional consultant from one of the best hospitality consulting firms. They will save you a lot of money in terms of setup costs.
No kidding. The only thing you can try without it is to rent your apartment or two to get the necessary experience, even if it means financial losses.
Also, if you’re a student looking to become an entrepreneur right after graduating (or even while pursuing your education), you probably don’t have plenty of free time. You have many academic assignments. Luckily, you can turn to a professional write my paper service to delegate your writing task. However, studying at university and at the same time starting your business is challenging. It is possible, though, with the help of qualified professionals.
Therefore, finding a good consultant will be the best solution.
It is worth deciding on the type of hotel in advance
It is a key point on which the next steps depend. There are many formats of hotels, for example:
- mini-hotel in a resort or tourist area;
- economy hotel;
- Business hotel for solvent and demanding clients;
- an apart-hotel, where you don’t rent out rooms, but separate apartments (flats) with all the amenities, including a kitchen.
Depending on which format you prefer, you will select the location of the object, its layout and design, the quality of materials used, the amount of furniture, and much more.
To decide, take a time-out for at least a month or two. Get a notebook and a separate folder on your desk. Keep all the answers to all the questions about the “your” option for the hotel business:
Write down the idea. Expand it – describe in detail what features you would like to implement that could attract customers to you.
Look for similar projects that have already been implemented. Keep photos, videos, and customer feedback. It will help you decide exactly what advantages you could borrow and what disadvantages you should avoid.
Make a detailed plan for the implementation of your idea. Understand and write down what the needs of your target customers are. Sketch a preliminary layout of the hotel. Make an indicative estimate. This information will be the basis of your business plan.
You will need money
Let’s face it: If your finances are tight, the idea of a hotel business is best postponed. It is the kind of business that requires a large-scale expenditure. And it is not always predictable.
The most significant expense line is the purchase of suitable premises if you do not own one. Renting other people’s facilities for the hotel is usually not rational.
In addition to the fact that you have to make monthly payments, you will spend a pretty penny on repairs and design in the building, which over time will have to part with. More or less acceptable is only a long-term lease for ten years with the possibility of subsequent redemption.
When choosing a room for a hotel, be sure to pay attention to the following factors:
- Location. It is optimal if the hotel will be in a popular place: near the sea (if we are talking about the resort region), near the sights, and in the business part of town.
- Transport accessibility. The more convenient it is to get to you, the more clients you will have.
- The development of infrastructure. The presence of a nearby supermarket, pharmacy, and parking will make your hotel more attractive.
- A separate entrance is also an important point.
Housing that meets these parameters is rarely cheap. To get a bank loan, you will need a ready-made business plan that proves to the bank that your enterprise is likely to be profitable.
You will need the patience to process all documents
Even if you already have premises (for example, an apartment or a house) in which you can open a mini-hotel, go through the procedure of hotel official registration. It includes, among other things:
- Transferring the premises from residential to non-residential;
- Obtaining a certificate of registration of the enterprise;
- Obtaining permits for the construction or redevelopment of the premises;
- Obtaining documents that confirm that your future hotel meets the requirements of fire, sanitary, technical, and environmental safety;
- Obtaining all kinds of licenses – for example, for the organization of catering (if you plan to provide guests with an option such as “breakfast included”) or trade in alcoholic beverages.
It is not a complete list of documents and permits. It may be much more extensive – it depends on the specific object. In any case, being ready for hotel registration takes a fair amount of time and effort.
You will have to learn to understand people
This skill is useful in any field, but in the hotel business, it is vital.
You can create a model hotel, fill it with expensive furniture and quality plumbing, and impress customers with your charisma. But if at your reception desk sits an unfriendly person from a business anecdote, all your efforts will go to waste.
The same goes for customers.
If you want to succeed, you have to be tough and uncompromising
Being able to say “no” or get the conditions you set is one of the most important traits of a hotelier. Probably be as early as the hotel project approval stage. And almost certainly when the hotel is already in operation.
Customers come in all shapes and sizes. Builders, renovators, vendors, and yes, employees too. Each of them will pull the blanket over themselves, squeezing and squeezing personal benefits out of you. If you allow yourself to be inferior to others you will lose.
And at the same time, cultivate a subtle psychologist in yourself
Psychological moments are one of the most unexpected discoveries hoteliers make for themselves.
Customers (hopefully you’ll have a lot of them) are different. To get them to leave positive feedback on your hotel, you need to find a key to each of them. Yes, sometimes by stepping on your own throat. And keep smiling no matter what.